Kevin's Korner for April 22, 2011

Dark Knight Rises rumors finally confirmed: Marion Cotillard and Joseph Gordon Levitt have have officially joined Christopher Nolen's Third Batman film, The Dark Knight Rises. Their roles aren’t quite what the rumor mill had been kicking around, but given their performances in Nolan’s previous flick, Inception, they should make interesting additions to the cast. And hey, this beats all those bunk Riddler rumors of a few months ago, right?

Singer on the set
  • Singer on the set
Bryan Singer says "my bad": The Hollywood Reporter is reporting that director Brian Singer said he may have made a mistake or two when making Superman returns. While critics seemed to love the film at the beginning, it had lukewarm box office numbers and left Warners without a viable franchise. Singer said, "I think that Superman Returns was a bit nostalgic and romantic, and I don't think that was what people were expecting, especially in the summer." He also likened the origins of the Man of Steel to Moses, and said that, if he had to do it over again, he would do an origin story with more "balls to the wall action." Despite the flaws, he said he was proud of the film. I personally liked Returns, and though Brandon Routh's portrayal was great. But yes, the script was way too romantic, and Kate Bosworth was rough as Lois Lane — and don't get me started on Cyclops.

Early word says Thor looks promising: There are a few reviews trickling in online regarding the Marvel blockbuster Thor. The movie, which comes out on May 6, has been getting some pretty good reviews, like this one from /Film.

As I post this, the movie is holding at a 92-percent "fresh" rating on Rotten Tomatoes. While some of the hype could be the production company, critics genuinely seem to like Thor. If nothing else, the positive early word of mouth is a good sign for Marvel, who have put all their eggs into the Avengers basket.

Kevin Smith fans rejoice: Controversial director and Southwest Airlines frequent-flyer Kevin Smith is doing the happy dance this week, after announcing his unusual marketing strategy for latest film Red State has already made back the $4 million budget. Smith has not screened the film for critics nor done any traditional marketing for the film, and is instead using his podcast to get the word out about a roadshow tour that includes a Q&A with the director himself after the screening. Red State will eventually open nationwide in October. Meanwhile, the Clerks director is probably saying "go fuck yourself" to many in the movie industry who had written Smith off as a crazy hack.

Mortal Kombat: If you haven't seen the digital short online, starring Star Trek's Jeri Ryan (got your attention now, don't I?) then you should check it out below:

This is the first of 10 planned digital shorts pimping the upcoming video game, and Warner Bros. Distribution is considering producing a full-length movie. If the first episode is any indication, fans are in for a gritty, hardcore action movie with some great cinematography. I just hope to see Reptile and Scorpion brought into the "real world" of this short.

Every Whedon fan should have a sense of humor: You have to have a sense of humor to be a fan of writer-director-all-around good guy Joss Whedon. If you don’t, you’ll probably go crazy waiting for his next project. The director, famous for Buffy, Angel and my personal favorite, Firefly wrote a movie called The Cabin in the Woods, starring Thor’s Chris Hemsworth. Sadly, the movie has been stuck in limbo for way too long, and sits completed, partially converted to 3D and unreleased. So, what's a director like Whedon to do? Complain? No. Try to raise enough money to buy the rights? Like that would work. No, you make a really funny poster:


Director scared up for Pride Prejudice and Zombies: After much rumor-mongering online and several directors dropping out, Craig Gillespie has been named director of the movie adaption of the popular genre-bending book. Gillespie's credits include the underrated Lars and the Real Girl and the upcoming remake of Fright Night.

Let's keep things moving with last week's Box Office Breakdown:

Family movies continue to dominate at the multiplex, with the animated Rio taking the top spot with $40 million in ticket sales. Scream 4 did mediocre business and pulled in 19.3 million — not bad for a movie that premiered 15 years after the original, I guess. Here’s the rest of the Top 10. What movies did you spend your hard earned George Washington’s on?

1. Rio: $40.0 million ($40.0 million total)
2. Scream 4: $19.3 million ($19.3 million total)
3. Hop: $11.2 million ($82.6 million total)
4. Soul Surfer: $7.4 million ($20.0 million total)
5. Hanna: $7.3 million ($23.3 million total)
6. Arthur: $6.9 million ($22.4 million total)
7. Insidious: $6.9 million ($36.0 million total)
8. Source Code: $6.3 million ($37.0 million total)
9. The Conspirator: $3.9 million ($3.9 million total)
10. Your Highness: $3.9 million ($16.0 million total)

Moving from the big screen to the small, here's the latest from the land of TV:

Eddie Winslow is a bad boy: Darius McCrary, most famous for his role as Eddie Winslow on Family Matters, had a restraining order issued against him after he was caught being creepy to his ex-wife. (Apparently, he sent her a death threat via e-mail.) Somewhere Carl Winslow is crying …

The Doctor is in: British Sci-fi smash Doctor Who makes its triumphant return on Sat., April 23. For the first time, the show will appear on both BBC America and the regular, non-American BBC at the same time. (Which is great, as I will no longer be tempted by spoilers.) If you find yourself intrigued by the good Doctor, check out this great video about the history of Doctor who:

I shouldn’t have to warn you, but I will; there are spoilers. There have been tons of videos and spoiler discussions on the latest season, which promises an epic death in the first two episodes. If that's how they start, I can't wait to see the cliffhanger they talk about mid-season.

Rest in peace, Sarah Jane Smith: Speaking of Doctor Who, actress Elisabeth Sladen, best known for her portrayal of Doctor Who companion Sarah Jane Smith, has passed away at 63. Her portrayal of the Doctor's companion is considered THE definitive version, and was popular enough to merit its own spin-off, The Sarah Jane Adventures.

Glee-gasmic spoilers are bad: Fox wasn't happy with an extra working on the set of Glee the other day. It seems the bit player tweeted an important plot point to a future episode which soon blew up across the Internet. The extra deleted her tweet, but it was too late. Don’t worry, I won’t spoil it (mainly because I think it's kinda lame) but Glee producer Brad Falchuck tweeted his displeasure, saying: “Who are you to spoil something talented people have spent months to create? Hope you’re qualified to do something besides work in entertainment.” Besides sounding like a douche-bag, he’s probably right; it won’t be easy for this extra to find work now. Maybe at Wikileaks?

Q invades Torchwood: OK, not really, but close. Blastr is reporting that famed Star Trek: The Next Generation star John de Lancie (who played the intriguing semi-villain Q) will be joining Bill Pullman and Mekhi Phifer for the new season. The show will be on Starz later this year …

Sam Axe Delivers in Burn Notice prequel: USA’s TV movie Burn Notice: The Fall of Sam Axe aired Sunday night. If you're a Burn Notice fan, the movie had everything you could possibly want, including a quick appearance by director and star Jeffrey Donovan. And Bruce Campbell fans had to have had a nerd-gasm during the great chainsaw scene …

DVD fan? Of course you are. Here’s the best of what hit the shelves Tues., April 19:

The Kings Speech (Yes, with the F-Word intact)
Rabbit Hole
Gulliver’s Travels
The Way Back

And now, the moment you have been waiting for — The Trailer of the Week:

It's the second theatrical trailer for Cowboys & Aliens, which shows a few more scenes than earlier versions. Cowboys & Aliens looks like a great mix of a western and a sci-fi movie, one I’m stupidly excited to see. Check it out:

Final note: If you made it this far, let me say a hearty Thank You! I look forward to seeing you back here on the Korner next week. Same bat-time, same bat-channel …

[Editor's Note: As we all get comfy with the new movie site, we're also welcoming back Kevin's Korner, a weekly guide to all things on the geek horizon. Without further ado …]

Two of these four actors have a date with Batman
  • Two of these four actors have a date with Batman

Welcome to Kevin’s Korner, a compendium of pop culture news you need to know. This week, we have some great tidbits about hotly anticipated movies and TV shows, along with a look at last weekend's box office totals, new DVD releases and the always exciting Trailer of the Week.

Let’s get things rolling with these news highlights …

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